How to Accept Fear as a Positive Part of Authentic Business
Fear is an ever present aspect of taking risks, doing something different in your business, being authentic from deep within. Many
self-help or entrepreneurs books suggest that fear is not real, or that fear must be overcome. I am about to success a unconventional perception I use with my authentic business coaching clients, that will help you move steadily forward in your authentic business to achieve success, income and balance while allocating fear to it’s best place in your mind.
In his wonderfully written, powerful book The War of Art, Steven Pressfield writes profoundly about fear. This paragraph sums up the intensity that it can muster.
“We fear discovering that we are more than we think we are. More than our parents/children/teachers think we are. We fear that we actually possess the talent that our still, small voice tells us. That we actually have the guts, the perseverance, the capacity. We fear that we truly can steer our ship, plant our flag, reach our Promised Land. We fear this because, if it’s true, then we become estranged from all we know. We pass through a membrane. We become monsters and monstrous.
We know that if we embrace our ideals, we must prove worthy of them. And that scares the hell out of us. What will become of us? We will lose our friends and family, who will no longer recognize us. We will wind up alone, in the cold void of starry space, with nothing and no one to hold on to.”
Pressfield speaks more eloquently about fear than I can summarize in this article. I highly suggest you read his book. Susan Jeffers wrote a best-seller 40 years ago called Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway. This is another book that must live in your business success quiver of crucial self-development information.
In psychology, we know that often emotions that you perceive as negative have a tendency to loom large and onerous. Entrepreneurial success will always have an element of fear associated with it. We get to decide how we name that fear and the meaning and power we allow it to have in our life and in our business ventures.
Fear can loom large enough to paralyze us from moving forward. It can be an excuse and story we hold on to, supporting our resistance and preventing our progress. Fear can also become our friend and our motivator. It is the same fear, yet when we alter the filter through which we view it, it can take on different meaning and it’s presence can yield us different and better results.
The narrative process is a creative one, whereby you take an emotion that is blocking you or getting in the way of your life energy, and bring it outside of yourself . You name it, as an entity and give it an image, a personality, an label, color, shapel, texture. You then create a story about your entity – in this example, your fear. The point of the narrative is for your fear to become something you can take out and look at objectively, outside of yourself. As you develop your externalizing narrative there are processes to enable you to shift your relationship with your fear. You become able to change the power differential and to even befriend the motivating and safety aspects of your fear, while moving past and through the paralyzing parts. This is something we do in authentic business coaching.
When you embark on an entrepreneurial business venture from a place of deep authenticity, you will encounter fears. There is risk in revealing your true self to others – though that risk is generally less real that it appears in our narcissistic perceptions. People in most cases are more focused on themselves than they are on us. Yet, as Pressfield wrote about, the fear of discovering how very powerful we are – how successful we can be – and wondering if we can will still be loved and embraced when we do so, is something to grapple with daily for anyone desiring to live an authentic and successful life. It begins with first embracing ourselves and second, embracing fear.
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Deborah Tutnauer says
The concept of fear in business has triggered powerful discussions. As an entrepreneur, does fear paralyze or motivate you – or something in between?